11.29.2011

yall. 50KNOVEMBER. YALL.

Did you know this has been the craziest month ever?
so NaNoWriMo. I did it. I wrote a 50,000 word novel in twenty-four days. I think I might have internal bleeding going on in my brain, but that's okay. I hit my word count buuuuuuut my story isn't finished. My estimate is that it will take me about 7,000-10,000 words to finish, not to mention the random pages that say INSERT _______ SCENE. But when all that is said and done I will have finished my second novel, which means I will have written two novels in five months (as long as I finish before 2012 :0)). 
Nano wasn't easy. Actually it was tough as fucking nails.
This is how I survived:
1. You see what you don't know is this: I'm lucky. I have great friends. I Have a small little handful of great friends who read as I write. They read the messy unedited gunk I write and they say YAY or NAY. They keep me on track, because sometimes I am way, WAY, off track.
2. I am in love with this manuscript. I mean it's not going to cure cancer or anything (which, by the way would be awesome), but I fell in love with my characters. I had to know more about them and the only way I could do that was to write about them. Here's the funny thing, I've had like four or five premises on the back burner. For most of them I've written the first ten to twenty pages for each idea, just something to play with. BUT THEN this little "what if?" scenario hit me and HAD to write it. It was festering. This scenario grew characters, who grew feelings and lives, and then it just blew up. Which made the whole nano thing a hell of a lot simpler. Really it all went way too quickly to even think about getting stuck in the mud.
3. My husband is awesome and doesn't whine when I'm up until 4 in the morning writing.
4. As things come to me I jot them down. I've got post-its all over my car. That being said I cannot sit down and do a couple hundred words. I don't roll like that. I write in what I call "bursts." At the very least I have to finish a chapter. But  just to give you an idea of word count I usually range anywhere from 2k-8k(big number span I know) in one sitting. This probably sounds a little crazy, but if I do little writing sprints of a couple hundred words my writing comes out disjointed and splotchy. So when I write I have to commit myself to it for a couple hours and just bust some wordage out. Why this is awesome: If I write a couple thousand words a sitting, then I only have to do X amount of writing sessions.
If you haven't noticed yet, I like stats. I do.
Final NaNoWriMo count was 50,133.
I finished in 24 days which means my daily average was 2,088. HOWEVER there were at least nine full days I didn't do any writing.
Those were the boring stats here are the fun ones.
SAY MY NAME (yes, that was a Destiny's Child reference)
Alice: 366
Harvey: 342
Bernie: 132
Martin: 51
Natalie: 113
Deborah: 53
Denis: 44
Mindi: 10
Misti: 4
Eric: 63
Luke: 35
Tyson: 18
Glen: 15
JUICY WORDS
Love: 122
Hate: 35
Shit: 20
Fuck: 15
Bitch: 11
Ass: 43
Damn: 7
She: 654
He: 728
EFFING GRAMMAR:
": 2,087
.: 3,996
,: 1,559
!: 55
?: 327
And in case you were wondering my current-unofficial-probably-won't-make-the-cut-working-title is LOVE AND OTHER FALLACIES.
So blah blah NaNoWriMo is over... until next year.
Okay so I'm still querying agents for HOMESICK FOR GOODBYE.
Sometime around the end of October I got tired of getting rejection letters. I hadn't hit ten rejections, but I was close. Someday I'm going to write a blog about my rejection letters and it's going to blow your socks off, but not today.
Today I'm going to tell you about how I rewrote my query letter and it started WORKING. (Someday I'll post a little diddy about query letters too, I promise).
So without further ado HERE ARE MY QUERY STATS.
Total queries sent: 27 (eeeeeek)
I haven't currently heard from 15 agents, which means I still have 12 queries floating around the internet world.
Out of those 15 responses, this is what I've got.
Rejections: 12
Submission Requests: 3
First let me say this, submissions are cool. Okay they're awesome. But still my chances are slim. But that having been said....
OMG YALL. OMG. OMG. OMG. OMG.
Okay. 
Because good news is always better than bad news let's break down my 3 requests.

My first request came on my birthday (11/8). How cool is that? BADASSCOOL.
The agent had only read my query letter and based on that, she requested my full manuscript.

The second request came on 11/22. This agent had also only read my query letter. She then made a partial request for my first fifty pages!

The third (and sweetest) request came Monday morning of this week (11/28). This agent has already read the first fifty pages of my novel, because her query procedures require that you send your first fifty pages right off the bat. Anyways I received an email saying she had "quite liked" what she had read thus far and would like to see the rest of the manuscript. So there ya go!

I'm not getting too excited because really it is more likely that my 3 submission requests will lead to 3 rejections rather than 3 offers, but at the same time I'm trying to enjoy this. Because this is surreal. I never in my life thought I would ever make it this far so everything after this is just a bonus really.

Sooooo my rejection/submission ratio is 4 to 1. BUUUUUT because my glass feels half full, let's just say I received 9 rejections with my old query letter. That means I've received 3 rejections with my new query letter, giving me a solid 3 to 3 ratio. (But don't forget those 12 queries still floating around in query land!)
Aaaaaaand I'm done talking about numbers until 2018.
If you think good thoughts, think good thoughts for me. If you pray, pray for me. If you do rain (read as "Julie wants an agent") dances, do a rain dance for me.

Alright so because you're all so sweet and adorable and cuddly here's a cupcake. (I'M 26 NOW :o) My awesome NOVEMBER was literally TWENTY-SIX years in the making. )

Leave me a comment, tell me you have a crush on me. I'll write you creepy love letters.

Love all you boogers and ghouls!

 -j

12 comments:

  1. This is SO amazing! Congrats! I can't wait for these agents to read your work and discover what I already know, you are a FANTASTIC writer! I'll be thinking lots of good thoughts for you.

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  2. Congratulations Julie. Revel in it - you.earned.it. Aside from the agents and bazillion dollars that undoubtedly come with being a published author - you are gifted, girl. Cant wait to see you on the best seller list one day :)

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  3. I love reading your blogs. I bet your novels are even better!! I can't wait till it's on the shelf so I can read it hehehe!

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  4. I had to read and didn't want to be a creeper so here I am leaving you an awk comment. Even though I'm not the reading type I would definitely 100% read your book. GOOD LUCK! Sending good vibrations your way!
    P.s. this blog post was the most educational thing I've read in a while. Congrats!

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  5. Cathy Ballard (Hayley's mom)November 30, 2011 at 1:18 PM

    Julie I am sooooooo proud of you! It is wonderful to see people who are willing to do the work to make their dreams come true. I know you are jsut around the corner to hit the "best selling authors" list!! Now give me one of those delicious cupcakes for goodness sakes!! :)

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  6. hey i promise to rain dance for you but first im gonna need to borrow an umbrella.....keep at it babe i really believe this is gonna happen for you!!!!!!-Joie

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  7. This is way cool Julie!! It's a great thing to find your passion, it opens a whole new love for life.
    And you are beyond blessed to have an awesome hubby and circle of friends to stand beside you, inspire you and give their honest to goodness feedback!! Now go show that hubby of yours some lovin' that you were probably neglecting him on ;)

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  8. So amazing! -Dexter and Stevenson

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  9. Awesome job! I cant wait to read it! Im so proud of you!

    Ian

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  10. Love you and Love your blog! It's so real and honest! Just keep following your heart and writing your guts out because good things will come of it! Proud of ya...so when can I read the new novel? Like,fo reelz, yo. I heart the premise and can't wait to read all about this character's journey! - Hayley

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  11. I have a not-so-secret crush on you! I am so proud of you! You are amazing and are built for great things! I cannot wait to read this novel!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Who writes a novel in 24 days????!?!?!! You do. So proud!

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  12. I can't wait to read this one too! I hear it's amazing. Also, I'm glad to know I'm not the only one with INSERT (STUFF) HERE in my NaNo project. It was a a brain-saver.

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